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'Snow Princess' role gives Evangel senior chance to make a difference

December 11, 2012 | Chase Replogle

“Laughter is timeless, imagination has no age, and dreams are forever.” — Walt Disney

This is a quote that Evangel University senior Lauren Simms lives by.

Simms is responsible for the smiles of thousands of children, eight times a week, as she walks the two-mile route of Silver Dollar City’s Gifts of Christmas Holiday Light Parade.

Having watched the Christmas parade since she was 2 years old, Simms longed to be the Snow Princess.

“It’s a dream to now be what I always wanted to be,” she says.

Wearing a poufy dress and crown isn’t the only benefit of being a princess, though, and Simms takes her responsibilities seriously. “This role gives me an opportunity to make a difference.”

Lauren Simms

Lauren Simms, aka the Snow Princess, is a senior at Evangel University.

One Friday night, as the floats were lining up for the parade, she was asked to meet a family. Walking toward the car, Simms saw the family with three girls standing with an EMT. The youngest had fallen and needed stitches. She was sitting in the car holding her blanket with tears on her cheeks.

“While I was talking to her, I gave her my wand to hold. ‘Is it magic?’ she asked. ‘It is if you believe it is,’ I replied as she smiled. Near the end of our conversation, she wrapped her arms around my neck and said, ‘I’m going to be brave at the doctor’s … you made me better. I love you, Princess.’”

As Simms walked away, the mother mouthed, “Thank you” with tears in her eyes.

Simms is a Communication Studies major, a student marketing assistant and a member of the forensics team at Evangel.

“The interpersonal skills and technical skills I have learned at Evangel have built a strong foundation,” Simms says.

Eventually, she would like to work at the Make a Wish Foundation or with Disney’s World Wish Day.

But for this season, “I acknowledge as many kids as I can and make them feel special. I hug them or touch the side of their faces and tell them, ‘Merry Christmas!’”

— Hallie Kilavos, senior Advertising/Public Relations major at Evangel University

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